Interview with Jason Norris

J Norris For Web

Jason Norris is an accredited and certified organic land care provider serving Southampton to Montauk. He has provided toxin free lawns and landscapes to his clients since 2011. You can reach out to Jason at norrisorganics@gmail.com

Q: Why did you become PRFCT?
A: I am aware of what chemicals are doing to our families, our children, and our pets. Because of the toxic effects of chemical runoff from lawns and the resulting algae blooms that harm water quality. My own spiritual growth gave me greater awareness of organic practices -- chemicals are a quick fix.

Q: How long have you been PRFCT?
A: I’ve been an organic practitioner for six years.

Q: How has it affected your business?
A: When the company became organic we were on the cusp of the change. We got rid of 60 clients that didn’t want to go all-organic, and in the meantime, we’ve doubled our profits. We didn’t expect this. But we are one of the only certified organic practitioners in the area. The Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA) has a great organic landscape certification program that provides these credentials.

Q: What’s your specialty?
A: It’s pretty comprehensive, but one standout is that we make compost tea from our own compost, which is squid based. Squid has an element that helps plant diseases – we get our supply of squid from the biggest dragger in Montauk. Also, we analyze soil samples using Paul Wagner’s services at Greener Pastures Organics, and we make the compost tea based on his recommendations.

Q: What is the biggest issue for your clients?
A: The weeds. Once you start following PRFCT methods, weeds are outcompeted by healthy plants and become less of a problem. As the process continues to reduce the number of weeds, our technique is weeding by hand. The money that would have been spent on synthetic fertilizers is spent simply on the time to hand weed, and we get great results. It works out to the same amount of money.

Q: What’s your biggest challenge in being PRFCT?
A: My biggest challenge is getting more landscapers on board with non-toxic property care, and more awareness of organic practices on the part of homeowners. People tend to go for the quick and easy fix they can get with chemical applications.

Q: What are your recommendations for leaves in the fall?
A: We haven’t removed any leaves from properties in five years. We like to pile up leaves, mulch them, and then distribute them to perennial beds. If you do this yourself, you don’t need a mulching mower --you can just buy a mulching blade if you want, or go over the leaves a number of times with a regular mower. All these things will turn your leaves into beneficial mulch.

Q: Can leaves left as mulch create an environment for moles and voles?
A: You wouldn’t want to blow leaves into perennial beds right up against the plants or the trunks of trees. Always leave a few inches of space. Also, don’t pile up leaves around the foundation of your house, as it will provide a safe cover for rodents to invade your home.